Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Planning a Christmas Menu- Help Wanted!



by Angie Braddock from the Murder, Plainly Read by Isabella Alan

Until the age of ten, I lived in Holmes County, Ohio and interacted and lived by the Amish every day. In fact, my beloved aunt Eleanor left her English life to marry my Uncle Jacob and join the Amish church. However when I was ten years old, my father got a big fancy executive job in Dallas Texas, and he, my mother, and I moved to the Big D. I never expected to come back.

Then over twenty years later, my engagement to a Texas lawyer was in shambles and my aunt Eleanor died, leaving me her Amish quilt shop, Running Stitch. I gave up my high-paying advertising job, told my ex-fiancĂ© to take a hike, and moved back to Holmes County to take over the shop. It was the best decision I’ve ever made, and that is never more evident than at Christmastime. There’s nothing quite like an Amish Country Christmas: the Christmas carols, the greenery, the snow… and the food. The very best part is the food.

This year, my boyfriend, Sheriff James Mitchell, and I are co-hosting a Christmas dinner party at his house. We’ve invited all our Amish and English friends. Everyone will be there from the ladies in my quilting circle at Running Stitch to Mitchell’s son. Even Mitchell’s ex wife is coming. She’s not so bad… most of the time.

We're having the party in early December before Christmas itself. It’s very important for the Amish to have Christmas at home, so we thought it would best to put it on another date to ensure that most of them would be able to come. One of the things that I want to share with my Amish friends is our non-Amish food traditions, and I need help. 

If you were hosting a big Christmas dinner party what would you put on the menu? What is the dish you can’t live without at Christmas?



Leave the name of your favorite Christmas food in the comments of this post for a chance to win Murder, Simply Stitched, the second book in the Amish Quilt Shop Mysteries, written by my biographer Isabella Alan. Please include your email address with your comment. The winner will be notified by email. The contest ends at 12pm EST on Sunday, December 6, 2015. The contest is open to U.S. and Canada residents only. Good luck and thanks in advance for those food ideas!


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78 comments:

  1. I have to have peanutbutter thumbprint cookies, but pumpkin pie is always good too

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  2. We make a special fruit salad that my husband brought in to my family from his family in 1964. We only have it on Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter. RUTH NIXON ruthenixon@sbcglobal.net

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  3. My mom has the delicious recipe for (homemade) dinner rolls which is a crowd pleaser. I also would do the potato casserole.
    myrifraf(at)gmail(dot)com

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  4. Being from the south our tradition is always to have banana pudding with a meringue topping. Merry Christmas! Thanks for the chance to win. poohwine1217@gmail.com

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  5. Potato latkes for Chanukah!

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  6. Being of Czech origin, the tradition for me would be potato dumplings with gravy and sauerkraut. dbahn@iw.net

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  7. Homemade Cranberries are my favorite thing at Christmas...yum...thanks for the Contest.
    Marilyn ewatvess@yahoo.com

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  8. Having oyster stew...a Christmas eve tradition! Love the Amish Quilt Shop Series!!

    ejbs3s@yahoo.com

    Oh and in response to the potato dumpling comment above...my family loves these...I just have never made them

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  9. We have to have green beans made with bacon and pumpkin pie. My favorite Christmas food is cookies, fancy ones.

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  10. I have to have dressing and ham.

    Tammy Hudson
    Tighefan2@gmail.com

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  11. My husband's Christmas cookies.
    karen (dot)kenyon(at)rogers(com

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    Replies
    1. Christmas day breakfast I make a special egg casserole. Eggs,sausage ,cream of mushroom soup, Sherry,and cheese. The smell while cooking is wonderful. The taste awesome.

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  12. My family insists on turkey, but I prefer ham. I love the dressing and then pecan pie!
    Happy holidays!!

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  13. OOps!! That comment was from me:
    lindaherold999@gmail.com
    Thanks!

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  14. When I was little, my Italian grandma always made lasagna on Christmas day. I miss that. But our family always has mashed potatoes. Pinkjulz@gmail.com

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  15. Homemade pies and cookies. patucker54 (at aol dot com)

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  16. Favorite Christmas foods: 1. the pies. 2. the banana bread I bake every season for my brother & son-in-law. It's a tradition. 3. My latest favorite is the bourbon balls I tried out last year. That's now going to be a tradition too.

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  17. My grandmother's delectable brownies were a rare indulgence but during the holidays they were always featured. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

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  18. Apple cake and lemon pie. Yum. elliotbencan(at)hotmail(dot)com

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  19. My Mom's rum cake.
    sgiden at verizon(.)net

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  20. My favorite Christmas food--believe it or not---is the fruitcake.
    suefarrell.farrell@gmail.com

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  21. We always have ham at Christmas and with it our family has always served my mother's cheese grits. They are to die for!! - Marihelen Ligon chettysmom@yahoo.com

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  22. That's a tough one! Pecan pie or fudge, I guess!

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  23. I love parsnips sauteed in bacon fat. It sounds like a cardiologist call in the making but when prepared right they are so sweet with the touch of saltiness. Also peppermint cheesecake with oreo crust is my daughter's favorite.

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  24. Hot yeast rolls! kkdurban@gmail.com

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  25. Hot yeast rolls! kkdurban@gmail.com

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  26. Green bean casserole with the fried onions on top. Hope the party goes well! Thanks so much for the chance to win!
    magicgirl2357@yahoo.com

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  27. My mother's Toutiere Pie ... or even her gorton spread on toast for breakfast. ... both canandian french dishes. Both made from spiced pork. There is no good way to describe them but "Delicious", unfortunately since moving south I haven't had any, because I'm the only one who likes it in my immediate family. cmpelchat (at) gmail (dot) com

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    Replies
    1. Oh, and it's really a "New England" thing I guess. But we are more widely spread around the country now, so maybe others will know it too.

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  28. I have to admit to a sweet tooth. I love Dark chocolate Turtles. Turtles are pecan halves dropped with caramel and covered with dark chocolate. They look like turtles.

    When I was in high school in southern Indiana I worked at the Tastes Frees. A Mennonite would occasionally bring a car full of Amish friends for a great. They would always get a giant vanilla soft serve cone or a large orange crush drink.

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    1. I forgot!
      cjreynolds52(at)comcast(dot)net

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  29. The best part of Christmas is a peaceful day with family.
    libbydodd at comcast dot net

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  30. I forgot suefoster109@netzero.net

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  31. Cookies!!! Mejohnson01@msn.com

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  32. My wonderful former mother-in-law (yes, that's right "former") used to make the most delicious holiday candy assortment. From pecan covered fondant logs to fudge and divinity, she would make TRAYS of goodies for all the family. She passed away recently and will be missed by many. ksarginson@tampabay.rr.com.

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  33. All I need is a tasty dessert, but a nice roast beef is tasty and fairly easy to prepare for a group.

    acm05atjuno.com

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  34. My favorite Christmas dessert is a Yule Log.
    peggyhyndman(at)att(dot)net

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  35. My Enchilada dip is always a hit! rockergoddess2002@yahoo.com

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  36. 8-layer cake with cooked fudge frosting. elainehroberson@gmail.com

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  37. My mom's homemade chocolate-covered cherries! She makes about 2000 every December to give as Christmas gifts. And we have a tradition now of having 27-Ingredient Chile con Carne (a recipe from a murder mystery book of the same name) every Christmas Eve when we get together with extended family/friends. gizmokitty97@hotmail.com

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  38. I can't think of anything that the Amish might not have. I really love candied sweet potatoes. What I wish I could always have, but rarely get anymore is dressing (especially like my mom's) and roast pork (like my gma's).
    pmettert@yahoo.com

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  39. Replies
    1. forgot to add my address lga2511@yahoodotcom

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  40. I make a Austrian/German braided bread, streizel, which my grandmother made every year at Christmas. I don't have her recipe but the one I make is pretty close! auroras4@yahoo.com

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  41. My favorite Christmas food was also a wonderful holiday memory...Christmas sugar cookies! Growing up we made a few simple designs covered in frosting, colored sugar, sprinkles...trees, ornaments, candy canes. But, then "Auntie Kat" (me) took over providing my nieces with a great memory of their own. I added buttercream frosting to our repertoire of Santas, holly, snowmen, and reindeer. Yummmmm! kat8762@aol.com

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  42. My sister in law's cookies holiday drops and many others
    ofhp@att.net

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  43. Every year we make hundreds of 3" wreaths made ( like rice krispy treats) with corn flakes, marshmallows and green coloring and red hots on top for berries! Absolutely adorable and delicious!!!

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  44. We have to have bourbon pecan pumpkin cheesecake~ bobandcelia@sbcglobal.net

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  45. We have finger foods and my favorite is cucumber sandwiches. We also have tons of sweets. I love peanut butter balls and mounds bars. Moonbay7399@gmail.com

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  46. Roast Beef was noted above, so let's add Yorkshire Pudding (popovers) and gravy! gulfviewdr@aol.com

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  47. We don't have a set Christmas dinner-usually some kind of beef. To me, the part that makes it Christmas is the fruit blintzes we have for breakfast!

    cozyupwithkathy @ gmail dot com

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  48. Its a toss up between peppermint cheesecake or cranberry bliss bars from Starbucks. Its so hard to choose just one. rachelcoxon@hotmail.com

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  49. My Grandmother's corn salad. We have had it on Christmas as long as I can remember.
    diannekc8@gmail.com

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  50. I think it's more out of the spirit of my grandmother, but she always had garlic salad, she loved it, and now I have it every year on my table. It doesn't get eaten, but it's there. I love it on the table because she loved that salad and fixed it every holiday. Thank you for the giveaway. jillybeans41@gmail.com

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  51. Spritz cookies. Always a favorite for me!

    ElaineE246 at msn dot com

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  52. Dont really have a certain Christmas food I cant live without. Just about anything would be wonderful as long as my family is eating it together. This year we are doing our German meal which it seems we do every other year. So rouladen and schnitzel will be our main course. Couldnt ask for anything better than that. kayt18 at comcast dot net

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  53. Being from Nova Scotia it wouldn't be Christmas without creamed lobster for dinner. capeygirl@gmail.com

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  54. I like persimmon cookies. They aren't really Christmas food but you can't really make them any other time. lkish77123 at gmail dot com

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  55. Stuffing and gravy! Always tastes better shared with family and friends!
    angelhwk68@yahoo.com

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  56. Plum pudding.
    bluedawn95864 at gmail dot com

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  57. Date bars are a favorite sweet, but I do love cranberry rolls, cranberry salad, scalloped potatoes, ham and of course pecan pie.

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  58. Homemade potato and cheese pierogies. Merry Christmas!

    dblaser(at)windstream(dot)net

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  59. Well it would be Eggplant Parmigiana not sure of spelling. But we have it every Christmas along with all the usual stuff. Thanks for a chance to win your giveaway.
    babemomara@att.net

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  60. Hmmm....pumpkin pie, eggnog, or /and cookies

    kaye dot killgore at comcast dot net

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  61. My mom's Cranberry Salad.... so decadent!

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  62. Molasses cookies!
    sallycootie@gmail.com

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  63. It's super simple, but I love corn casserole. Yet, only make it at Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter. Guess that makes it more special ;)
    Bdlogan@live.com

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  64. I would have prime rib.
    Lisa
    hseaside5@aim.com

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  65. We have to have our homemade variety of cookies and pumpkin pie .Me, I like to have my cranberry relish.
    amhengst AT verizon DOT net

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  66. I always host Thanksgiving (about 40 people in a small year),my sister-in-laws hosts Christmas. When I was first married, I was assigned the jello. I've moved up to bringing a vegetable. Lately, I've brought a spinach souffle that can be made in advance, cut and served hot and cold. Never any leftovers! cheers@marjimmanor.com

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  67. Sharon Baker. slpetera@yahoo.comDecember 3, 2015 at 2:21 PM

    I love a good Pumpkin Dump Cake with lots of whip cream. After all Christmas only comes once a year.

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  68. Chocolate Pecan Pie! areewekidding@yahoo.com

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  69. We have to make multiple batches of Caramel puffcorn every year! Time to ready the roasting pan.
    JHolde955(at)gmail(dot)com

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  70. My mom usually makes chicken parmesan which is so tasty. Im hoping to get her recipe so I can try making it think year. utaker555@gmail.com

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  71. My favorite Christmas treat is cranberry orange relish.

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